Published April 5, 2022
The UB Clinical and Translational Science Institute Annual Forum featured a distinguished group of presenters tackling a wide range of topics, from health equity and the future of academic medicine to kidney transplant outcomes, COVID-19 treatment, and long-term results among children newly diagnosed with cancer.
The forum’s keynote speaker, Philip M. Alberti, PhD, Founding Director, AAMC Center for Health Justice, and Senior Director, Health Equity Research and Policy, presented “Centering Community Engagement to Achieve Health Equity.” Watch the full video of his presentation, including the post-presentation question-and-answer session here.
During his keynote, Alberti defined health equity as a point at which “every community begins at the same starting line.” He explained that he looks at equity in three interconnected ways – populations within an organization; equity between patient populations, or healthcare equity; and equity between communities and health. “An equitable healthcare organization where faculty staff learners are treated equitably produces better health outcomes for patients, [and] more health equity.”
Addressing the political determinants of health, Alberti emphasized, “We have to find ways to collaborate together and dig our shovels as deeply as possible to get to those economic, racial and social injustices together. … We all must be a 100% committed.” He noted that this work requires “a coordinated, multi-sectoral approach to population health dynamics like health inequities. It is not the job of medicine and public health alone, even in deep collaboration with community partners and residents. That is insufficient. It is all of us together.”
Alberti’s presentation also touched on the importance of trustworthiness and its impact on community engagement. The AAMC developed a “Trustworthiness Toolkit” that is available for download here. This is one of a number of useful resources found on the AAMC website.
The forum’s featured speaker, Allison Brashear, MD, MBA, VP for Health Sciences, University at Buffalo, and Dean, Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, discussed her pioneering research and her outlook for the medical school’s future in “Career Perspectives and Vision for Clinical and Translational Research.” Brashear spoke often about the importance of patients in her own career and as she framed future research questions. Watch the full video of her presentation here.
“Innovation and education is key to really training the next generation,” Brashear explained, adding that the university’s innovations “make us unique. And some of that is highlighted in the recent coverage that we've had about our new curriculum, our anti-racism training.”
Brashear touched on the necessity for a focus on diversity of race and gender with respect to both students and faculty. “We need to hold all administrators — myself, chairs, program directors — accountable for making sure that we are moving to a much more diverse community,” she said.
In addition, Brashear highlighted the impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had on the need for reinvesting in public health and lessening the barriers to clinical trials. She also discussed the team-based approach that contributed to the development of new COVID treatments at UB and beyond.
Additional forum highlights included:
Visit the CTSI YouTube page for all videos from the 2022 Annual Forum.